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20 Things to Do Instead of Focusing on the Scale 

feet on digital weighing scale on wooden floor

Authored by Sarah Polite – Former Guest and Success Story of Hilton Head Health

I’ll never forget this day. I had been at Hilton Head Health for a month and had a really amazing day. I had done more things physically than I had in my whole life in a day. I had ridden a bike for the first time in years. I lifted the heaviest amount of weight I had ever lifted. I took a walk on the beach. I practiced relaxing yoga. I was feeling so good. EMPOWERED. Both emotionally and physically. And then I stepped on the scale.  

The number on there didn’t move from the last time I was on there.   

WHAT!? Every other week it had. Some weeks a little. Some weeks a lot. But every week there was movement. Something. Progress.  Not this week. My stomach sunk. So did my heart. I lost all of the good feelings I had just experienced moments before and all of the wind knocked from my sails.  

I immediately started to have irrational and self-doubting thoughts. I logically knew that the scale wouldn’t move every week. Until this moment I didn’t care if it did. Or I thought I didn’t care that it did. But I irrationally thought otherwise. That it should. This journey had never been about the weight to me. Losing weight was more uncomfortable me than not losing weight. But in that moment that number in the scale triggered this reaction.  

I stepped off the scale. I took a breath. I remembered all I had done before this moment. In this day. How I was proud of myself for all I had just done. All I had been doing. I remembered my WHY. Why was I here. Why did I want to be here?  

I thought about my journey leading me to here. The happiness I felt trying new things, moving for the joy of it, feeling strong, and feeling empowered. Something I had never felt in my body before. Remembering my self-worth and value isn’t wrapped up in a number. Yours isn’t either. I decided to take a break from the scale. To opt-out of weekly weigh-ins and instead decided to celebrate and focus on all the victories I was achieving in my life on my journey. I didn’t want to let negativity creep into my current freedom and happiness again. I know it’s easy to. To get caught up in a number. The number on the scale, the size of our pants. How we look in that dress. The number of calories in a meal.  What others say to us about our bodies. All of it. To let it dictate our happiness. To tell us our worth when it doesn’t line up with what it “should be” in our heads. Or what it should be according to society’s standards.  

Sarah Polite Boxing

So, in the moments I forget, I pause. I remember this exact day and that exact moment of how I felt and know I don’t want to feel that way again.  

On the days that the number changes on the scale and it tries to tell me my worthiness is anything other than loved valued and WORTHY. I step off the scale.  

So, in that moment of question, I stopped my thoughts and stepped off the scale and decided that it won’t be making a weekly appearance in my remaining time. I know it’s easy to, to weigh ourselves weekly, daily, even after every meal. To be consumed and paralyzed by the number under our feet and thinking happiness will happen once we hit the magic number we hope for- but please don’t let it. Don’t let it creep into your freedom and happiness either. You deserve both, no matter what the scale says or no matter what anyone says- including yourself.  

Here are a few of my favorite things to do instead of focus on the scale

  • Move because of how makes you feel good not because of how many calories it’s burning.  
  • Celebrate how you feel at that moment.   
  • Be grateful because you are moving more than you could before.  
  • Enjoy having more energy.  
  • Enjoy feeling less pain.  
  • Release shame and guilt around food.  
  • Feel better for sleeping better.  
  • Feel good in new clothes you might not have bought before. Buy yourself some new clothes.  
  • Be grateful for more strength and feeling stronger.  
  • Be open to trying new things.  
  • Remember to practice mindful eating and how good it feels to not mindlessly eat.  
  • Try a new recipe that is full of fresh ingredients and not worry about the calories attached to it.  
  • Listen to your body and honor it.  
  • Rest.  
  • Reflect on how you’re achieving your fitness goals.  
  • Remember why you started.  
  • Know how far you’ve come from where you’ve started.  
  • Be proud that you started.  
  • Be even prouder that you kept going and will keep going.  
  • Envision yourself along the way.

Sarah Polite
Former Guest and Success Story at Hilton Head Health

It’s time to start your own journey to health and happiness. Click here for more information about the wellness and weight loss programs at Hilton Head Health, recently named the #1 Wellness Resort the Country by USA Today